The Retreads

There's no shortage of remakes and additions to old franchises this summer

Poltergeist scares up some summer thrills.
Poltergeist scares up some summer thrills.


May 22

Dying time's here! The 1982 original found scares in the simplest of setups, as does this remake: A suburban family suddenly finds their house possessed by ghosts obsessed with  their youngest daughter. The tension ratchets up with every new visitor to the home or clown doll discovered in a toy box, and you can bet Sam Rockwell (in the role originated by Spokane's own Craig T. Nelson) will be awesome, as usual. Rated PG-13 (DAN NAILEN)


May 15

In a parched, postapocalyptic world, extremely dirty (and often mutilated) humans fighting for survival ride dirt bikes, souped-up cars and strangely armored tanks to catch or outrace one another. The story isn't so important here with the new Mad Max reboot; it's all about the thrill of the chase. More than three decades after the first low-budget Mad Max starring Mel Gibson captivated audiences, Australian director George Miller is back at the helm of the most visually stunning Mad Max yet. Filmed in the sweltering heat of the Namibian desert, sand and grit permeate every shot, making stars Charlize Theron (with a buzzed head) and Tom Hardy (The Dark Knight Rises) look badass as ever. Impressively, the film was made with as little CGI as possible, with about 80 percent of the stunts and explosions actually performed in real life. It's also in 3-D, hopefully making it all the more spectacular. For fans of the original, look for baddie Hugh Keays-Byrne (aka Toecutter) to steal the show. Rated R (LAURA JOHNSON)


July 1

John Connor is like the James Bond of postapocalyptic sci-fi. He's seemingly the sole man standing between mankind and its destruction in every one of the Terminator movies, and different actors slide into the role with every episode. This time around, Jason Clarke follows in the footsteps of Edward Furlong, Nick Stahl and Christian Bale as Connor in a story that also includes the return of the robot-fighting couple from the 1984 original (John's mom Sarah Connor and sent-from-the-future bodyguard Kyle Reese) and a certain musclebound ex-California governor (Arnold Schwarzenegger) as a hitman robot — a perfect role given his verbal dexterity. The latest episode bounces between 1984, 2017 and 2029 in the Terminator story, so keeping up might require viewings of the original, Terminator 2: Judgment Day and maybe Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines to get all the necessary background. Or you can simply lean back and enjoy the new Terminator for the same reason the older chapters were worth a look — insane stunts, killer special effects and some seriously idiotic (and occasionally hilarious) one-liners from the Governator. Not yet rated (DN)


Aug. 7

Much like the 2012 rendition of the The Amazing Spider-Man which traded in Tobey Maguire for Andrew Garfield, this Fantastic Four is yet another reboot of a not-that-old movie. Starring fresh faces like Miles Teller, Michael B. Jordan and Kate Mara, this film will be both new and nostalgic as the four well-known heroes seek to save the planet from a deadly enemy, utilizing their special powers harnessed from another world. Not yet rated (KAITLYN ANSON) ♦

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